I didn't get the NICU job...what do I do now?

  1. 0
    Hi, I am an experienced L&D nurse who teaches OB at a local college and hold a master's degree as a WHNP. I used to work in L&D for many years, now teach OB at the same hospital I used to work at. I recently interviewed on the NICU where the nurse manager knows me. There were 70 applicants for 3 positions! I got interviewed w/11 others, but didn't get the position. I really want to be a NICU nurse (the pay in teaching is terrible!) and I really thought I would get offered a position because my references were checked (and glowing) and because the nurse director asked if I was interested in eventually being a manager because she is retiring soon.
    So, I didn't get the position and don't know if I should:

    A. Try to get a position back in L&D at that same hospital in the hopes that eventually another NICU position will open up and I will have another chance?
    B. Take a night shift position at that same hospital in postpartum (mother/baby)?
    C. Completely forget this hospital and take a critical care position at another hospital that has a NICU. I recently interviewed for an IMCU position and may get offered it?
    D. Go back to school to get a DNP w/a neonatal specialty?
    E. Doing something else??? (Fill in the blank).

    HOW CAN I GET INTO NICU??? I know it's hard right now to get jobs, but it kills me that just 2 years ago the new grads I TAUGHT are working NICU and I'M NOT!
    Any advice is appreciated! THANKS!
    Last edit by obprof on Jul 20, '11
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  3. 5 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    I understand your frustration. I also have an MSN as an adult NP but I've reached a new chapter in life and the NICU is where I want to be. The more I look, though, the more it looks like the odds are stacked against me. I thought about volunteering in a rockers program to get my foot in the door, but I don't know if this will do it. I'd love to hear any advice or tips as well. There is nothing sweeter than a baby and I feel like it's where I belong.
  5. 0
    You sound over qualified for staff. Are they afraid you may up and leave if something administrative crosses your path?
    Try for something else in WH and let the NM know you are still interested in NICU if another position opens up.
  6. 0
    What do you WANT to do? Which option appeals to you the most? Are more attracted to one unit (L&D, post partum, or IMCU) more than the others. Assuming you were going to have to work at this next job for a period of a couple of years ... which one would be most appealing to you. Don't think of the job as a temporary job, but as a career. Pick the unit that you could have positive feelings about as the start of a new stage in your career. If you think of it as "settling" and "temporary," none of them will seem attractive and your negative attitude may poison your chances of success.

    I don't think you should be getting a DNP focusing on NICU if you have never worked in a NICU. You might hate it -- and that would be a huge waste of resources.
  7. 0
    Thank you for your responses! I think I'm going to apply for the L&D and Postpartum positions. I really enjoy these areas and at least I get to take care of babies!
  8. 0
    I would try other units in the area. Or look into a volunteer program in the unit you want to work in. At least it's a foot in the door!

    I wouldn't recommend getting a DNP with a neonatal specialty, especially since it's one of the few specialties that actually requires NICU experience.

    Dust yourself off and try again. You'll find something!


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